The new imac loads up with fast fea­tures, writes Jen­nifer Dud­ley- Ni­chol­son

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - Front Page -

It’s all about speed.

PUT this iMac on your desk and you will find it hard to look away.

To be fair, it would be hard to ig­nore any 27-inch screen on a stan­dard ta­ble, but this gi­ant mon­i­tor of­fers such clar­ity and such a bright LED glow it would be sim­i­lar to in­stalling a mul­ti­me­dia wall down one side of your study.

The fact it comes pack­aged in an el­e­gantly rounded, stain­less steel body that hides its com­put­ing parts in the back is just as im­pres­sive.

But iMac fans have seen this look be­fore.

Ap­ple has not bro­ken the mould, with the lat­est Ap­ple desk­top com­puter look­ing like the iMac of 18 months ago.

The real ap­peal of the freshly re­leased desk­top com­puter lies be­hind its screen. This iMac is all about speed. Like its por­ta­ble si­b­lings, this iMac has re­ceived a speed boost from In­tel’s lat­est gen­er­a­tion of pro­ces­sors.

All mod­els come with a Core i5 model as stan­dard, start­ing from 2.5GHz, though this can be up­graded to a 3.4GHz Core i7 chip in the prici­est pack­age.

This is paired with an AMD Radeon HD graph­ics card ( 1GB or 2GB) for smooth graph­ics and 3D im­age ren­der­ing, and up to 16GB RAM for efficient multi-task­ing, mak­ing the iMac up to 70 per cent faster, Ap­ple says, and a bit of an over-achiever.

In fact, there’s a chance many users won’t need all of this com­put­ing power, but it does make edit­ing high-def­i­ni­tion video less frus­trat­ing and de­liv­ers de­mand­ing games with lit­tle lag.

Even fill­ing the screen with Win­dows is a sat­is­fy­ing ex­pe­ri­ence and our Core i5 model with 4GB RAM did not fal­ter, no mat­ter how multi-lay­ered pro­grams be­came.

Ap­ple has added a fur­ther im­por­tant speed boost to this ma­chine – Thun­der­bolt.

First seen on the new MacBook Pro, Thun­der­bolt is a new type of con­nec­tion that of­fers speedy file trans­fers ( 10Gbps si­mul­ta­ne­ous up­load and down­load).

Sadly, there are still few prod­ucts mak­ing use of this In­tel for­mat, but when they ar­rive, cur­rent iMac users will be ready.

The other six ports re­main the same – four USB con­nec­tions, Eth­er­net and FireWire.

Space for a DVD and mem­ory card line its right side.

The built-in cam­era in this iMac also gets an up­date, now of­fer­ing Face­Time calls in high-def­i­ni­tion.

And the com­puter ar­rives with a choice of a Magic Mouse or Magic Track­pad for your point­ing-and­click­ing needs.

Pair­ing this com­puter with the flimsy Blue­tooth key­board that is in­cluded still seems strange though, and Ap­ple also leaves quite a few fea­tures out of its new iMac that are avail­able in PC equiv­a­lents.

This iMac still comes with­out touch­screen func­tion­al­ity, for ex­am­ple. Nor does it fea­ture an HDMI con­nec­tion or me­dia cen­tre-style soft­ware for easy big-screen view­ing.

How­ever, de­mand­ing com­puter users from de­sign­ers to bud­ding film­mak­ers are bound to ap­pre­ci­ate the iMac’s speed boost.

This boost should also af­ford ev­ery­day users a lit­tle ex­tra flex­i­bil­ity.

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